Hi everyone! (haha, there are probably two people reading this thing!)
Xmas break is over and we are back in school. I thought i would give some details about our vacation. Karen's mom and the Manila clan was here in Baguio, we had a good time going to the "sights" of Baguio like Mine's View Park, Burnham park, SM, and all that.
Once I got my duty at school done, we joined Karen's family in Manila, by this time, her dad had arrived. For Karen's birthday, I got her an Ipod nano, in pink. We went to one of our favorite African/Middle Eastern restaurants in Manila, sat on pillows and ate. I found a funny picture of me in there so I put it in for chuckles. Xmas dinner was at the condo that Maria and Paul had rented for the week. lots of preperations were made and an astounding number of presents were laid out. Everyone arrived and we ate and drank and opened all the presents. I got a bunch of clothing (is there a hint in that?) and Karen got me an awesome Invicta watch. I got her a pair of earrings and a super thick bathrobe.
I got my cell phone pick-pocketed the day before x-mas in a grocery store. I truly don't like it in Manila. Not saying that something like that is commonplace, but we don't gt that in Baguio. (or at least on a much smaller scale)
Next, Karen and I went back home, followed by Paul and Maria. We then began the twisty scenic 7 hour bus ride to Sagada. We saw some real beautiful sights that the pictures do not do justice. The rice terraces are spectacular, whole mountains carved out in shelves for growing rice. We got to Segada that evening and found a clean quiet little mountain village. We walked into "town" and ate dinner at the Yogurt House. All the food was fabulous. Fresh produce, herbs and yogurt really made this place memorable.
The next day, we went out for an early breakfast, got a walking guide and set out on a four hour treck. We first crossed the city cemetary, which opened to a place called 'echo valley" (for obvious reasons) Across from where we were standing were the famous "Hanging Coffins" where people through ropes over rock formations and hang their coffins over the side of cliffs. We then set out across rice paddies to visit the waterfall area where we had a much needed cool off. We swam and relaxed there for a while before heading out to The cave with an underground river and cut our own bamboo walking sticks.We got back to our room, and after a quick nap, set out for dinner at the much anticipated "Log Cabin" where we were to be enthralled with the European cuisine, set menu (we needed reservations) and atmosphere. Well, the atmosphere was great, but the service was reminiscent of a cafeteria, dropping the food down in front of us within seconds of arriving, and the food, well lets say it left you "wanting". Flavor. We all had a good chuckle about that, went over to the Yogurt House and while they all had coffee and dessert, I had dinner again. (fabulous).
The next morning, the ladies got in room massages while the gents guy talked, we then had a quick bite for breakfast and set out to go back home to Baguio. That night we ate at the quickly becoming our favorite place "Le Petit Cafe" (other names are also available). Karens Mom and Dad left the next day after setting us up with some nice racks and shelving stuff, (we are in need of shelf space here).
The next day (New Years Eve), we went to San Fernando with our Persian friends and cooked/ate/swam and chilled out in our own little "resort" with a nice big pool area, BBQ and beach huts. We had a great time, got a little tipsy and really ate a lot of good food, mostly prepared by our favorite chef, Saeed. Al's new car seemed to fail him (by his standard) as he was not able to go the usual "ludicrous speed" ( that he is most comfortable driving. In all, we had a great time, and plan on making that a monthly endeavor. The whole cost for each person is somewhere around 20 bucks....
Anyways, that was about it, we missed our friends Ray, Grace and Kristina this trip (they went home for the holidays), but plan on getting back on the same page with them as quickly as possible.